14 Oct 2009

Farm recycling schemes growing

6:05 am on 14 October 2009

Expansion of farm recycling schemes is making it easier for farmers and growers to dispose of plastic containers and wraps without burning or burying them.

An agrecovery programme which started about two years ago to recycle plastic agrichemical containers from farms and orchards, has just opened its 70th collection site.

Bruce Emerson of 3R, which manages the programme, says veterinary clinics, and Elders and PGG Wrightson are among those who have set up new collection facilities.

And the number of chemical companies as well as farmers using the service, is growing.

There is also a collection service for plastic baylage and silage wrap and used agri-chemicals now.

And the largest supplier of crop packaging, Agpac, is also expanding its scheme for recovering and recycling the plastic.

Agpac is in the fourth year of a programme which has collected more than 280 tonnes of plastic wrap from farms around new Zealand.

Recycling manager Chris Hartshorne says there's been a 600% increase in the past year.

The baled plastic wrap is currently sent to China for processing, but Agpac hopes to find a way of processing the plastic here.